His Holiness Pope Tawadros II consecrated today, Saturday, the Church of Saint Virgin Mary and Archangel Raphael in Al-Gawaher area in the center of Alexandria.
Upon his arrival at the church, His Holiness the Pope removed the curtain from the commemorative plaque that dates its inauguration, and commemorative photos were taken of him in front of the plaque, along with the general bishops supervising the pastoral sectors in Alexandria.
His Holiness went to the church to start the consecration prayers, where the main altar was consecrated in the name of Saint Virgin Mary and Archangel Raphael, the eastern altar in the name of the Martyr Mina and St. Pope Kyrillos, while the western altar in the name of St. AnbaAbraam, Bishop of Fayoum. The icon of the Pantokratorwas also consecrated, as well as the iconostat (the carrier of icons) and the rest of the icons of the church.
An altar was also consecrated in the name of Saint George in the church on the basement floor.
After the reconciliation prayer, His Holiness ordained one of the church’s deacons in the rank of deacon (full deacon) in the name of Deacon Abram.
His Holiness the Pope pointed out in the sermon of the liturgy that Kiahk month is the fourth month of the Coptic year, and it has four features with which we prepare to receive Baby Jesus, namely:
1- Biblical readings: In the church, the church reads the first chapter of the Gospel of our teacher Luke the Evangelist through the four Sundays of Kiahk, since it contains important events that represent a summary of the life of all mankind, since the fall of Adam and Eve, and their exodus from Paradise with a promise of the coming of one who will crush the head of the serpent, so humanity had beenwaiting for the Savior to come.
2- Real fasting: Being prepared as Prophet Moses fasted before receiving the two tablets of the Law. Fasting is to change life, mind, heart and thought.
3- Heartfelt Praise: Being prepared by popular praises and hymns, “My heart and my tongue praise the Trinity,” because the tongue conveys feelings from the mind to the heart, which come out in the form of sweet tones, as praise is the joy of the Church.
4- Life review: A person gets prepared through reviewing himself and his behavior, the virtues he gained and weaknesses he abandoned, and what he has lost, then he shall start the new year with a new heart.
The fathers General Bishops supervising the pastoral sectors in Alexandria who participated in the prayers are: Their GracesAnbaBavli (the Montazah sector), AnbaIllarion (the West sector), AnbaHermina (the Eastern sector) and Father Hegemon Abram Emile, the representative of the Patriarchate in Alexandria, the priests of the church, a large number of fathers priests of Alexandria, and the people of the region, who filled the sides of the church and outside it.